The race among Republicans running for state Ag Secretary is shrinking from three to two. Karey Claghorn, a farmer from Milo, says she’s dropping out and endorsing an opponent. Claghorn says after a few weeks of talking with Bill Northey she’s decided to drop out of the race and endorse Northey.
Claghorn, who has never held elected office before, is executive director of the American Hampshire Sheep Association and helps manage 16 other groups in the livestock industry. Claghorn and her husband run a cow-calf operation, with some of their two-hundred acres used to grow hay and row crops. Claghorn grew up on a farm in southern Indiana.
Claghorn says she’d talked with Northey at several forums on the campaign trail and got to know him well. Claghorn says, “In this political environment of conflict, we’ve decided that together we can make a greater contribution to Iowa. Because we think that working together works.” Northey says he has great respect for Claghorn and Northey says her decision will make his campaign more diverse.
Northey says it “definitely makes our team stronger, makes our experiences broader.” Northey says they have a lot of things to do. Northey says Claghorn’s decision gives another boost to his campaign with about a month to go before the primary in June. He says people recognize that they have momentum as they’ve raised twice as much money as the other campaign from twice as many contributors.
Claghorn’s withdrawal from the race leaves Northey to face Mark Leonard of Holstein in the primary. Two candidates will square off in the Democratic primary, Denise O’Brien of Atlantic and Dusky Terry of Greenfield. The four candidates are seeking to replace Patti Judge who is now running for Lieutenant Governor.